SLAYER Guitarist Says DAVE LOMBARDO Brings Intensity To The Band

August 20, 2004

SLAYER guitarist Jeff Hannemann recently told the Chicago Sun-Times that he is thrilled by this year's Ozzfest lineup (which is headlined by BLACK SABBATH and JUDAS PRIEST),though he doesn't think about his own band being just as deserving of a spot in that vaunted metal pantheon.

"I just don't think of us as having that kind of status," Hanneman said. "We just enjoy playing and having a good time. I still get surprised when I'm hanging out at a mall and kids come up and say, 'Hanneman! SLAYER!' I'm like, 'What? Oh, yeah.'"

Hanneman also spoke of the fan loyalty factor which has allowed SLAYER to have a two-decade-plus long career without the backing of commercial radio or MTV.

"Metal in particular has something to do with the fans that are so loyal — they stick with their bands, and it's never about being trendy," Hanneman said. "Other people go through trends — 'I like this this week, and next month I'll like that.' With metal, it's about coming back to the essentials. With [drummer Dave] Lombardo coming back, it's like, 'God, it's great again!' Not to put down [former drummer Paul] Bostaph, but Lombardo coming back is just amazing because he just brings such an intensity to the band."

Hanneman said the band is looking forward to recording again starting in January, and that the musicians still see new horizons to conquer and new topics to provide dark inspiration for their murderous epics.

"We always write about the dark side of the human species," Hanneman said. "We always look for anything that's evil or anything that's bad. So I'm sure on this record there's going to be something about 9/11, and it'll probably be from the perspective of the bad guys, too.

"With the whole P.C. thing, it's, 'You can't say this. You can't say that,'" Hanneman added. "This is supposed to be America, where you can say anything you want and then you have to take the consequences. It's weird to me: We've been picked on for years about stuff we wrote about. But why can't you say stuff like that? Why can't you do this? With 'Angel of Death', it was like, 'You're Nazis!' Oh, yeah, right — we're Nazis. We really believe in that kind of government. I just feel you should be able to say whatever you want. I just hate that political correctness shit."

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